Binoculars at the ready – the RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch takes place from 25 – 27 January and everyone in Bedford is encouraged to take part.
The Big Garden Birdwatch is a wonderful way to spend an hour watching and recording the birds that you see. You don’t need a garden to take part, any Bedford park or green space is suitable.
Sign up here: www.rspb.org.uk/birdwatch and submit your results by post or online before the second week in February.
Traditionally, the Bedfordshire Birdwatch results are very similar to the national results, but last year, some lucky residents recorded seeing a great spotted woodpecker, a red kite and 1.8% saw a goldfinch.
Despite taking the number one spot for 16 consecutive years, house sparrows have declined by 56% since the Big Garden Birdwatch began in 1979.
There’s are a few simple things you can do to help house sparrows, such as planting shrubs like honeysuckle and hawthorn to provide cover and a home for insects.
Song thrushes and starlings have also declined by almost 80% since 1979, due to a loss of places where they prefer to live and breed.
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“To encourage more birds to visit your garden put feeders out as soon as possible so the birds start to flock to your patch,” said an RSPB spokesperson.
“Topping up your feeders regularly is especially important during the colder months when our garden birds most need our help.
“It’s also important to make sure birds have a fresh water supply – a good tip is to float a tennis ball in your bird bath to stop the water freezing.”